Thursday, May 20, 2010

Review: Lift

Summary: Written as a letter to her children, Kelly Corrigan’s Lift is a tender, intimate, and robust portrait of risk and love; a touchstone for anyone who wants to live more fully. In Lift, Corrigan weaves together three true and unforgettable stories of adults willing to experience emotional hazards in exchange for the gratifications of raising children.

Lift takes its name from hang gliding, a pursuit that requires flying directly into rough air, because turbulence saves a glider from “sinking out.” For Corrigan, this wisdom—that to fly requires chaotic, sometimes even violent passages—becomes a metaphor for all of life’s most meaningful endeavors, particularly the great flight that is parenting.

Corrigan serves it up straight—how mundanely and fiercely her children have been loved, how close most lives occasionally come to disaster, and how often we fall short as mothers and fathers. Lift is for everyone who has been caught off guard by the pace and vulnerability of raising children, to remind us that our work is important and our time limited.

Like Anne Morrow Lindbergh’s Gift from the Sea, Lift is a meditation on the complexities of a woman’s life, and like Corrigan’s memoir, The Middle Place, Lift is boisterous and generous, a book readers can’t wait to share. -- Voice

Just a few days ago I finally read LIFT by Kelly Corrigan. I have been wanting to read this book for what seems like years -- ever since I read and loved THE MIDDLE PLACE (my review.) LIFT is a very short book (less than 90) pages, but it does pack a powerful punch. I'm not sure that I enjoyed this book as much as I did THE MIDDLE PLACE, but there were parts of it that really resonated with me.

There is no doubt in my mind the most rewarding job in the world is being a mother. (And if you hit me on the right day, I'll also tell it's the most difficult.) I think Kelly Corrigan has managed through the pages of LIFT to show exactly that. Motherhood is an amazing experience that women are truly blessed to be able have. But she also shows those less glamorous parts of being a mother and how some of us don't live up to our expectations. LIFT is a very realistic look at motherhood, and I'm so grateful to Ms. Corrigan's for writing such a touching, yet honest, look at being a mother!

One thing that really stood out to me about LIFT (besides the cover) was the title of the book. In one of the stories in the book, Ms. Corrigan tells the story of a man who loves to hang glide despite the risks. He explains that you have to ride out the turbulence to truly get the "lift" and fly through the air. I love that Ms. Corrigan used this metaphor for being a mom because it's absolutely perfect. There are times when my kids are sick or just mouthy when I know I have to hang in there and just get through it. Although sometimes it feels like these "bad" times will never pass, I know something will happen that makes it all worth it! Whether it's something they do to make me so incredibly proud to be their mom or just telling me they love me, the good times are always right around the corner. And as you moms know, there is no better feeling than that closeness you feel with your children!

Many of you will remember Ms. Corrigan's very touching video called Transcending. It was a wonderful tribute about women and their friendships. Well, Ms. Corrigan has done it again! Check out this video about moms -- it's sure to bring a tear or two to your eyes (especially if you are a mom!)

I know I'm a few weeks late with this post since Mother's Day is over...but I then I figured it's never too late to pay tribute to moms! LIFE truly would make a fantastic gift for the mothers in your life. It's a little gem of a book that's sure to brighten a mom's day!

Thanks to Hyperion for providing me with a review copy of this book.


Sandy Nawrot said...

Well, you have to love starting the day with a few tears! That was beautiful. I remember that video of The Middle Place...I sent it to all of my friends. YOu aren't kidding that parenting is a roller coaster ride. There are days when I want to sell my kids to a more patient person. There are days when I am so proud, and days when I can't help but take on their problems (like yesterday) when I almost can't see straight I'm so upset. What in the world will we do with ourselves when they leave? (Except read more and golf alot that is.)

bermudaonion said...

I didn't enjoy this as much as The Middle Place either - I think maybe my expectations were too high. Great review!

Beth F said...

I haven't read either book but OMG that video. WOw.

Beth Hoffman said...

Great review, Julie! I've not read either of her books, but I suspect one day I will. So many books and too little time.

Molly said...

My sister-in-law just told me about this book and provided another youtube video in which she gives a very powerful and motivating speech to a room full of women. She encourages each and every one of them to go after their dreams.

Between Liz's recommendation and your review, I know that I need to read and cherish the message of this book.

Alee said...

I loved this book too! Thanks for the review

rhapsodyinbooks said...

Did you read the book Bad Mother by Ayelet Waldman? I wonder how this compares!

Gerbera Daisy Diaries said...

I am in love with Kelly Corrigan. I will read every word she puts on paper. This was a totally different "book" than The Middle Place. A treatise on motherhood. Something I would like to carry in my purse and refer to on bad days.